Investigations into fraud claims for council tax discounts could see the council recover more than £1,000.

St Albans City and District Council is looking into the high number of claimants for single person's council tax discount that have been made in district.

Adults living on their own are entitled to a 25 per cent reduction in their council tax bill.

The council has now signed up to a government service that identifies properties where suspected fraudulent claims are being made.

It matches information given to the council on discount claims with other financial and personal data.

Through this service, one person has already been found to have wrongly claimed a discount worth £1,900 over two years while two other wrong claims totalled more than £800.

A more extensive survey of the data is to take place in the coming months.

Other fraud investigations found four social housing applicants had given wrong information which led to them being removed from the council's waiting list for housing.

A council home was taken back from a tenant after inquiries found they were living at another address and an attempt to buy the house with an £82,000 discount was stopped.

Chair of the audit committee Cllr Julian Daly said: "Fraud is a crime that is seen right across the country and it's not surprising the council is targeted.

"The victims are real people like families who can't get social housing property because others have wrongly obtained such a home.

"Council taxpayers also lose out. Fraudsters are stealing money that would otherwise go to support our public services such as our parks, museums, leisure centres and the grants we give to voluntary groups and charities."